To say that the Denver Broncos are banged up entering Week 3 would be an understatement. In the wake of a veritable epidemic of mostly lower-body injuries, the Broncos are on to Plan D and it's only the third game of the year.
Drew Lock? Out. Von Miller, Courtland Sutton, A.J. Bouye — all Pro Bowl-caliber starters — on injured reserve. Dre'Mont Jones, DeMarcus Walker, and Mark Barron are on IR, too.
Even Phillip Lindsay, who's usually durable, has missed all but two quarters of the year thus far. Being banged up is one thing. Losing all your best players with the alacrity that Denver has is enough to make one wonder what the shot-callers at Broncos HQ did to offend the Football Gods so.
At the end of the day, though. It's spilt milk and the Broncos don't have time to cry over it — not with Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers coming to Mile High this week and the home team is once again 6-point underdogs according to SportsBetting.com.
Here's the final injury report for both squads in Week 3.
The Broncos had a few players pop up on the injury report this week, including rookie wideout Jerry Jeudy, who suffered a painful rib injury after taking a big hit in Pittsburgh. Listed as questionable, Jeudy's progress will be one to monitor on gameday as the Broncos would really be up you-know-what creek if he's unable to go.
Aside from Lock, whom the team is not going to place on IR, the only other notable progress report for Denver is Lindsay, who's battling a turf-toe injury suffered in Week 1. Officially listed as doubtful, Lindsay did not practice on Wednesday or Thursday, but did see limited action in the final session of the week. That's encouraging but it'd be a big surprise to see him suit up this week.
More likely, he and the team have circled Week 4's battle with the New York Jets on a short week as his target date for return.
Aside from the backup wideout Justin Watson, the Bucs are at relatively full strength. Ndamukong Suh, the big defensive tackle, missed a lot of practice this week but his absence was listed as 'not injury related.'
Brady is going to have a full arsenal on Sunday while the Broncos are playing rookies and/or backups at several spots on defense. However, the Broncos do have some depth despite the best efforts of the injury bug to chip away at it.
Here's to hoping it'll be enough to get Denver in the win column for the first time this year. You know the old football cliche: any given Sunday.